Events, Workshops, and Presentations

I am happy to offer a presentation, day of prayer, or retreat to your parish or group! I look forward to hearing from you. Please email me.


 

Reviews and Photos from Past Workshops & Events

 


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Upcoming Events, Retreats, Workshops and Presentations

God Calls Me by Name
Wednesday, November 8, 2017 from 6:15-8:30 pm

St. Simon Church (1860 Grant Rd, Los Altos)
parish.stsimon.org/


Colette is available for Spiritual Direction–in person, or by Skype and Phone. Please email her at: colette.lafia@gmail.com.

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Workshop and Presentation Topics and Themes

It would be my joy to speak to your community on any of the topics listed below. I can tailor workshops, presentations, and speaking engagements for your gathering, conference or retreat. Please contact me for in person or online presentations.

  1. Life Lessons from a Trappist Monk. What does a monk’s life have to teach us? You’d be surprised—more than you think. Celebrate Thomas Merton’s 100th birthday in 2015, by hearing the words of wisdom Brother Rene shared with Colette over the five years of their extended correspondence. This workshop will focus on creating and living by a personal rule as inspired by the Benedictine way of life.
  2. The Transformative Power of Surrender
    Opening our heart to the path of surrender is foundational to the spiritual journey. How can the practice and grace of surrender transform us? Participants will learn to look intimately at their lives as the greatest teacher of this often misunderstood spiritual principle through engaging in prayer, art, and contemplative listening. Participants will leave this workshop with confidence that walking the path of surrender—living in acceptance and trust—will deepen their spiritual lives and bring more peace.
  3. Spiritual Friendship: A Path to Your Most Authentic Self
    Spiritual friendship is an important part of our spiritual journey. How might growing in spiritual friendship encourage us to grow in love, and allow us to become our most authentic selves? We will reflect on the spiritual friendships that have most influenced our lives through reflection, prayer, and journal writing.
  4. Comfort Circles: A Sacred Space for Cultivating Compassion and Connection
    Embodying the qualities of compassion and connection, participants will gather in a circle to give and receive comfort. During this contemplative time, there will be guided meditations, collage making, and deep listening to bring the healing power of comfort to ourselves and each other. Colette will read from her book, Comfort and Joy: Simple Ways to Care for Ourselves and Others, and use it as the foundation of this presentation.
  5. Deepening Spiritual Awareness through the Visual Arts
    Learning to express our spiritual awareness allows us to deepen our spiritual lives. The visual arts are a way to “see” our interior life, and therefore reflect upon it in a richer way. Participants will discover how art making can deepen their connection to the Divine and bring about greater self-discovery, which is the key to a more intimate spiritual experience. This is a great segment to integrate into a retreat or a longer workshop.
  6. Invigorating Your Spiritual Life by Keeping a Journal
    The practice of keeping a spiritual journal is a powerful and profound way to cultivate sacred awareness. Participants will engage in writing and drawing activities to experience the benefits and insights a spiritual journal can offer. We’ll explore how keeping a daily journal can deepen our awareness of the presence of the Divine in all aspects of our lives.

 

What people are saying…

The Advent day of prayer retreat was a gift and an invitation to simply … pause… for a time, from all the busyness that has come to characterize the season of Christmas. I appreciated having an opportunity to sit and rest in the quiet beauty that is Mercy Center.
Thank you Colette and Marilyn for such a graced day full of some much needed time and space to just “be.”

— Jeannette, Participant

“Many thanks for bringing your wisdom and experience of Seeking Surrender to us over the past three weeks in the mini-retreat. Your gift in creating, opening and holding the space and time with which to enter contemplative prayer and contemplative sharing was a beautiful blessing.”

— Director, Saint Agnes Spiritual Center, San Francisco

Colette’s manner of engagement positively impacted the staff. One person stated, ‘The writing exercise was especially helpful and allowed me to gain new wisdom related to patient care.’ For myself, it offered me a visual representation of my experience of prayer and contemplation. Colette has a healing and renewing presence. Her spiritual energy is generous and abundant. We will definitely invite her back for continued staff care and expressive arts training.”

— Sakatar, Workshop Participant, Institute for Health and Healing, San Francisco

Colette interweaves her deep centeredness as a spiritual guide and teacher and her skill as an artist in her work, which provides an opportunity for opening to deeper realms of awareness.  As a retreat participant, I was soothed by her gentle presence, which allowed me to open to the clear guidance I needed in the moment.  I was also comforted by moments of connecting back to the knowingness of my truth, which is that I am a being of love and light in a sensual physical form, made by the potter’s hands and therefore also a uniquely skilled potter myself!  I left renewed to create in this brief yet grand playground of life without ever needing to WORRY, and remembering all I need to ever do is LOVE.  Thank you, Colette!

— Lisa, Advent Retreat Participant

Thank you so much for giving us the gift of your presence today.  The students and I found the spiritual direction experience moving and meaningful.  Your gentle invitation to welcome the sacred into our circle was gratefully received by all!  We will definitely plan to have you come again next year,

— Heather, Spiritual Care Director, CPMC


Past Workshops, Events and Presentations

Tuesdays, September 12, 19 & 26, 2017
Radical Hospitality Retreat Series
Ignatian Spiritual Life Center, San Francisco

May 12, 2017
Awakening the Gifts of the Holy Spirit During a Time of Transition
Mercy Center: Burlingame, CA

May 7, 2017
Presentation on Spiritual Direction
Saint Ignatius Church, San Francisco

May 2, 2017
The Transformative Power of Surrender
School of Applied Theology, Oakland, California

April 10, 2017
Comfort Circle: Sacred Space for Cultivating Compassion & Connection
School of Applied Theology, Oakland, California

December 9, 2016
Advent Day of Prayer
Mercy Center: Burlingame, CA

November 29, 2016
The Transformative Power of Surrender
School of Applied Theology: Oakland, CA

October 19, 26 & November 2, 2016
Living Mercy: A 3-part Retreat in Daily Life
Saint Agnes Spiritual Life Center: San Francisco, CA

October 5, 2016
Day of Prayer: Surrendering into Grace
Santa Sabina Retreat Center: San Rafael, CA

May 3, 2016
The Transformative Power of Surrender
School of Applied Theology: Oakland, CA

April 22, 2016
Women in Transition: The Art of Waiting
Mercy Center: Burlingame, CA

March 18, 2016
Deepen Your Intimacy with the Sacred through Spiritual Art
Mercy Center: Burlingame, CA

March 16, 2016
Comfort Circles: A Sacred Space for Cultivating Compassion & Connection
School of Applied Theology: Oakland, CA

Dec. 11, 2015
Joyful Surrender: Advent Retreat Day
Mercy Center: Burlingame, CA

Oct. 18, 2015
Journey Into the Heart of Surrender
Saint Ignatius Adult Faith Formation/Fromm Center: San Francisco, CA

Sept. 13, 20 & 27 2015
Seeking Surrender: Mini-Retreat
Saint Agnes Spiritual Life Center: San Francisco, CA

July 14, 2015
The Art of Listening in Spiritual Direction
Institute for Health & Healing, California Pacific Medical Center:
San Francisco, CA

July 13, 2015
Journey Into the Heart of Surrender
The Sequoias: San Francisco, CA

June 5-7, 2015
Love Me Into Being (Retreat)
Villa Angelica: Carmel, California

June 2, 2015
Journey Into the Heart of Surrender
Calvary Presbyterian Church: San Francisco, CA

May 24, 2015
Seeking Surrender: Book Signing
Mercy Center: Burlingame, CA

May 22, 2015
Women in Transition
Mercy Center: Burlingame, CA

May 13, 2015
Life Lessons from a Trappist Monk
Santa Sabina Center: San Rafael, CA

May 11, 2015
Journey Into the Heart of Surrender
Mindfulness Care Center: San Francisco, CA

May 7, 2015
Seeking Surrender: Book Signing
BookShop West Portal: San Francisco, CA

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